In describing the Continental Flying Spur as a "Sumptuous and spacious four door with the soul of a high performance coupe" Bentley aptly captures the essence of its Grand Touring sedan.
Dual Bi-Xenon headlamps flank the Flying Spur's signature stainless steel grille as the hood lines sweep diagonally rearward. Fully radiused wheel wells and 19-inch alloy wheels dominate the side profile which also features a boldly molded fender line and pronounced rocker panels. The rear view is dominated by LED tail light clusters, dual stainless steel exhaust ports and the traditional Bentley winged logo.
A 6.0 Liter, 552 horsepower twin-turbo W-12, essentially two Volkswagen narrow angle VR6 engines mated together, routes its 479 pound-feet of torque to the continuously variable all wheel drive system via a six-speed, sequential automatic transmission. All of this power will take the Flying Spur to an amazing top speed of 195 mph...making it the fastest production sedan on the planet. Shifting is accomplished via either the console selector or paddle shifters on the multi-function wood and leather steering wheel.
While mileage is not necessarily a big concern of Bentley owners, the Flying Spur is estimated by the EPA at being capable of 10 miles per gallon city and 17 highway...
Self-adjusting air springs, electronic dampers and cornering and traction control technologies provide a very comfortable and secure ride. Braking is provided by large four wheel ABS brakes, bringing the Flying Spur from 60 miles per hour to a dead stop in about 116 feet...pretty impressive for a car that weighs over two and a half tons.
Hand crafted leather appointments and burled walnut veneers highlight the interior of the four-passenger cabin. The single trim level includes four-zone automatic climate control, heated rear seats with lumbar massage, 16-way power front seats with heating, cooling and lumbar massage, a 12-speaker CD sound system, satellite radio, a DVD navigation system and Bluetooth phone connectivity.
Electronically controlled leather seats include heat elements and lumbar massage and rear seat passengers can access the built in bottle chiller via the fold down center arm rest.
MSRP for the base Bentley Continental Flying Spur is $170,990 but, as our test example came equipped with the Mulliner Specification, the refrigerated bottle cooler, rear view camera and electric glass solar-panel sun roof, our sticker topped out at just over $191,400.
In the rarified realm of the ultra-luxury Grand Touring Sedans, the 2008 Bentley Continental Flying Spur might just hold center court.